TORONTO August 30th. Digital Champion Lisa Davidson believes in the importance of both mental and physical well-being for leading a happy and healthy life, and strives to inspire others to lead a healthy and active lifestyle. The first step to getting there is making time for you, which is not always easy as a mom, but Lisa knows that running makes her a better wife and mother. Connect with Lisa on Twitter @TorontoFitMom.
Love and running with my Husband. By Lisa Davidson.
I love my husband, I do. He is truly my best friend, love of my life and all the other cheesy stuff that makes people roll their eyes. But when it comes to running, the gloves come off. There is no sweet talk, no terms of endearment, it’s just me versus him on the open road. We are serious about our competition, so much so that we even compete over who has the better GPS watch.
When I first met Jeff in 2009, I was on a brief break from running. I had developed IT band pain while running STWM in 2008, so running any distance was unbearable. Jeff was training for a 10k, and on our fourth date as he was talking about the race, I realized that I wanted to get back at it. We started having running dates to train together for the Zoo Run and other races soon followed. It all started out pretty friendly as Jeff would be there by my side, pacing me, encouraging me and not letting me quit.
That all changed the day I ran a 10k race without him and finished 15 minutes faster than I had in our training runs. Ever since then it has been about who will run stronger and faster. We always start in the same corral, but we don’t stand together. We kiss each other wish one another luck, and then we both go off to find our own starting points. Once we cross the finish line, we meet each other to swap times.
Now here is the reality check, he is a man, I am a woman…yeah, obvious, right? He is also 5’9″ and around 180 pounds. I’m 5’2″ and…well let’s just say substantially less. I mean it is simple science that he is stronger and faster because of his weight and height so I will always have to pump my legs that much faster to get a time even close to his. So he may always get a faster time, but when it comes to placing, he’s got nothing on this girl. I always place higher in my age group, and sometimes even win!
Once I got pregnant and had to get used to running while growing a human inside of me, my time slowed down and we started training and racing together again. We knew opportunities to go for leisurely training runs together would be few and far between once we welcomed our baby, so we wanted to take advantage of running together while we could. The last race I ran before I had my son was the Zoo Run at 17 weeks pregnant. I had to slow down my pace dramatically, but running right next to me was my guy. He had come to the race with a goal time, but instead ran next to me every step of the way and even insisted that we cross the finish line at the same time.
After the Zoo Run I had the fabulous idea that we should run the STWM half-marathon the following fall. I had grand visions of being on maternity leave and training everyday while pushing our son in the jogging stroller. That dream quickly came crashing down when I realized our son couldn’t be in a jogging stroller until 7-8 months, when he had enough neck strength to hold his head up while we sped around Toronto. My training suffered and I only ran about 20k total in preparation for this race. Once again on race day my husband gave up his goal time to drag me through 21k, and once again he held my hand as we crossed the finish line.
I am happy to report that the competition is back on! I renewed my dedication to running after that race and got serious after I signed up for the full marathon at STWM this year. Our little guy now accompanies me on runs in his stroller and loves yelling “FASTER!” He’s a great coach! When I improved my half marathon time to 1:42 earlier this year, the look on Jeff’s face was priceless. It said: “Oh dear, she might actually run faster than me.” He literally got up the next morning, and still gets up 5 days a week at 5:30am to get in his training runs. Of course, I get up as soon as he gets back to head out for mine. You can feel our determination, neither one of us giving up or slacking off in fear that we will be outrun by the other. He’s running the half at STWM and I am running the full, so as far as I’m concerned, I win no matter what!
In all seriousness, I am thankful that my husband (along with our little man) inspire me to keep going, getting stronger mentally and physically everyday. We may not be racing together on October 20th, but I am looking forward to seeing him waiting at the finish line, cheering me on. As we run into each others arms, the first thing I will say to him will be “what was your time?”
Are you training with your partner? How do you motivate each other? Is there any competition? Let us know in the comments below.